2017-2018 D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center Annual Report

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To view the 2017-2018 D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center Annual Report in PDF form, please click here.

The D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center transforms lives by delivering pro bono legal help where and when the community most needs our help. With the generous support of our donors and more than 1,500 dedicated volunteers, we operate clinics and resource centers that transform lives, one client at a time. Here are the Pro Bono Center’s key accomplishments in 2017-2018 (July 1 through June 30):

Providing a Legal Safety Net

Providing a Legal Safety Net

Thousands of people across the District of Columbia regularly face the threat of losing their homes, custody of their children, or access to life-sustaining public benefits without a lawyer. Through our Advocacy & Justice Clinic, Bankruptcy Clinic, Advice & Referral Clinic, and Immigration Legal Advice & Referral Clinic, the Pro Bono Center helped individuals and families in critical need of legal advice and representation. These clinics serve as safety nets for the entire legal services community.

  • Advocacy & Justice Clinic: 311 clients served
  • Bankruptcy Clinic: 62 clients served
  • Advice & Referral Clinic: 1,428 clients served
  • Immigration Legal Advice & Referral Clinic: 155 clients served

Empowering D.C. Residents in Need

The Pro Bono Center's services have evolved as the community's needs have changed and as we have adapted to meet those changes. We have learned that we can meet the legal needs of many people without providing a lawyer for full representation, given the right tools. Our court-based resource centers, telephone help line, and online services equipped District residents with the means to deal successfully with their legal problems.

  • Landlord Tenant Resource Center: 4,221 customers served
  • Consumer Law Resource Center: 447 customers served
  • Probate Resource Center: 656 customers served
  • LawHelp.org/DC: 80,970 page views per month
  • Legal Information Help Line: 12,918 callers helped
Empowering D.C. Residents in Need
Tackling the Affordable Housing Crisis

Tackling the Affordable Housing Crisis

One of the most urgent challenges facing low-income District residents is the lack of safe, decent, and affordable housing. Recognizing the need for affordable housing, the Pro Bono Center mentored pro bono attorneys representing subsidized housing tenants in eviction cases through the Housing Right to Counsel Project. Our Understanding Your Rights Seminars for Landlords also helped ensure that landlords understand their rights and tenants' rights, helping them to comply with the law, especially when proceeding with eviction.

  • Housing Right to Counsel Project: 27 eviction cases mentored
  • Understanding Your Rights Seminars for Landlords: 70 landlords attended 8 seminars

Supporting the Broader Community

Our work is not limited to helping individuals with legal concerns - we also support the greater District of Columbia community by serving community-based nonprofits and small businesses. The Pro Bono Center's Nonprofit Legal Assistance Program provided legal clinics, legal training for nonprofits executives and managers, and matched nonprofits with pro bono counsel in employment, real estate, intellectual property, contract review, and other matters. Additionally, our Small Business Legal Assistance Program helped small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs to succeed by providing training in legal topics and monthly walk-in clinics for small business owners to meet one-on-one with a pro bono lawyer.

  • Nonprofit Legal Assistance Program: 1,486 nonprofits served
  • Small Business Legal Assistance Program: 1,077 small businesses served
Supporting the Broader Community
Mobilizing Pro Bono Volunteers

Mobilizing Pro Bono Volunteers

Last year, the Pro Bono Center mobilized more than 1,500 dedicated volunteers to serve over 20,000 individuals, nonprofits, and small businesses. We equipped our volunteers with training through our Pro Bono Training Program, provided them with unlimited access to online materials on Probono.net/dc, and coordinated the Pro Bono Partnership, a network of more than 100 law firms and federal government agencies committed to providing pro bono legal services in D.C.

  • Pro Bono Training Program: 609 volunteer attorneys trained
  • Probono.net/dc: 9,893 memberships from pro bono attorneys
  • Pro Bono Partnership: 103 law firms and 4 federal government agencies